Fire Island Underwear Party Moves to Rebel Thanksgiving Eve
When it comes to men’s underwear, bigger is always better.
After the most successful summer ever for his Friday night underwear parties in Cherry Grove’s Ice Palace, Daniel Nardicio is not about to rest on his laurels. No hibernation, no siree. This man is no bear -- nor are low-bodyfat muscled young’uns who migrated from the Pines by the hundreds every weekend to his Grove parties.
Nardicio is taking his internationally known franchise into the city, but for one night only (for now). The D-World Underwear Party will take place Wednesday, Nov. 21, at Rebel, the multi-storied club at 251 W. 30th St. in Manhattan, between Seventh and Eight Avenues.
Never one for modesty, Nardicio is claiming that this will be the largest such party in the world. Unfortunately, this will not become a matter of record. Nardicio says he contacted the "Guinness Book of World Records," but the organization declined to certify his party.
"I did some research," Nardicio told EDGE. "I couldn’t find anything else nearly as big. There have been other parties, but not where clothes check is mandatory. I contacted Guinness, but they didn’t bother responding to me."
Hmmm, interesting. Let’s do a check list!
Hot-dog eating contest:
• Annual hot dog-eating contest held every July 4th in Coney Island, in which people eat as many hot dogs as possible within a certain time frame.
• Promoting adult obesity, the worst health problem in this country? Check!
• Promoting wasteful use of food in a starving world? Check!
• Promoting consumption of nutritionally dubious meat product? Check!
• No clue whatsoever of the obvious phallic connotations of gluttons shoving more penis-shaped meaty objects down their gullets than Marcus Bachmann in the tea room at an ex-gay retreat? Check!
D-World Underwear Party:
• Now, on the other side: over 1,000 in-shape energetically dancing, celebrating their lives and celebrating their community while dressed in expensive undergarments? No check.
Remember your mother admonishing you to wear clean underwear because you never know when you’ll be in an accident? Mothers know these things.
Just as at the Fire Island bacchanals, everyone who comes to Rebel will have to strip down to his tighty-whities. (These days, considering what one pays for "designer underwear," more like tighty-silver-band-embroidered-pinkpastel grommit with pink stitching). That goes ditto for women, who are most definitely welcome (Nardicio has never had patience for male-exclusive events). Be be warned, ladies: Whatever they told you in your last conscience-raising meeting, you’d better be wearing a bra. It’s not that Daniel minds, but if city inspectors hear Rebel’s been allowing Janet Jackson NFL Hafltime naughties, it could jeopardize their liquor license.
The reason for the mandatory clothes check is, Nardicio says, to "level the playing field." Also, people can’t bring In their blasted cell phones as easily. Just as the Black Party is the Vegas of Circuit events,, what goes on in Rebel stays in Rebel. Don’t even think of tweeting a photo of some celebrity or our boss dancing the night away in an outfit that gives new meaning to the term "boxer cut."
An underwear party only works when everyone is (un)dressed equally. This eliminates the vibe that some guys are "above" checking their clothes.
"If you keep your clothes, you’re not part of the party," Nardicio says. "There’s a power dynamic at work. At the Ice Palace everyone appreciates the level playing field. It’s good for gay men to see that everyone has different bodies!"
That "power dynamic" makes everyone a loser. Having some people fully clothed makes the guys who do strip down to their skivvies feel like losers. The ones who keep their clothes on also retain their "cooler than thou" attitude.
The all-strip-down rule doesn’t mean everyone likes it. Nardicio relates how, during the big Ascension Party Weekend on Fire Island, hundreds of out-of-town visitors had descended from the Grove’s neighbor, Fire Island Pines.
"They were throwing shade," he relates. "We had stand-downs at the door. It’s funny. They’d say, ’I’m not wearing underwear.’ So we’d supply it."